Center Creates Accelerator to Help Arkansas Entrepreneurs Get Early-Stage Federal Innovation Funding

Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center

The Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center is launching a new accelerator to help more early-stage Arkansas companies tap into SBIR, the highly competitive federal Small Business Innovation Research funding program.

Also known as America’s Seed Fund, SBIR and its sister, Small Business Technology Transfer, annually award $2.5 billion in grants and contracts to small firms to pursue the commercial potential of innovative technologies.

Companies seeking SBIR funding typically apply multiple times before succeeding. Only 17% of Phase I proposals were funded in 2017, the most recent year for which statistics are available.

ASBTDC’s new Lab2Launch Accelerator will offer step-by-step guidance on every aspect of preparing and submitting a robust SBIR proposal. Led by the center’s Rebecca Todd and Martial Trigeaud, participants will get help with topic selection, budget preparation, writing and editing, market research and more.

“Through SBIR, entrepreneurs can build businesses around their scientific passions and get the funding they need to develop cutting-edge products and technologies,” said State Director Laura Fine. “We want to see more SBIR applicants and winners from Arkansas and believe the Lab2Launch Accelerator is a way to accomplish that.”

Separate six-week cohorts will focus on different federal agencies. The first will begin in January and focus on the National Institutes of Health. A National Science Foundation cohort will follow in March.

To give companies based anywhere in the state an opportunity to take part, they may attend sessions virtually or in person.

There is no application fee or cost to participate. To apply, visit asbtdc.org/l2l-accel. Spots are limited, so interested companies are encouraged to apply early.

L2L-Accel is made possible through Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

For more information, contact Todd at (501) 683-7700 or rctodd@ualr.edu.

This story was provided by the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center.

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